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CMW students stand up, raise money for AutismSpeaks

Each "Saturday Wright Live" ends with a dance party among members of the Stand-Up For Autism committee or of "Best Buddies" an that creates friendships between special needs students and their buddy.
Each "Saturday Wright Live" ends with a dance party among members of the Stand-Up For Autism committee or of "Best Buddies" an that creates friendships between special needs students and their buddy. (Photo courtesy Jake Burrows)

C. Milton Wright Stand-Up for Autism was created four years by C. Milton Wright High teacher and 2017 HCPS Teacher of the Year finalist Michael Brogley and has raised nearly $14,000 since.

This year’s event, better known as “Saturday Wright Live,” was held March 24 at the school and raised $4,181, to bring the four-year total to at least $13,874.

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Inspired by his dad, Brogley wanted to give back to his community by hosting a comedy show, proceeds from which would benefit AutismSpeaks, a non-profit organization dedicated to researching the causes and better treatments for the Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

As of June 1, 2017, CMW Stand-Up for Autism had raised $9,693.

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“Saturday Wright Live” is a sketch comedy show, with educational segments infused throughout. Educational segments have included defining what autism spectrum disorder is, common misconceptions about ASD, the different parts of the autism spectrum and interviews with families and special educators directly impacted by autism.

The show also has a variety of comedic acts. CMW Stand-Up has put its own twist on games such as “The Dating Game,” Jimmy Fallon’s “Wheel of Musical Impressions” and “Box of Lies,” and Who’s Line is it Anyway’s “Scenes from a Hat” and “The Hoedown.”

Both students and teachers participate in the acts. Teachers have gone as far as sharing their most corny jokes, to doing a “Carpool Karaoke” with Brogley.

To conclude the show every year, it has been a tradition to invite all the Stand-Up for Autism members on stage, along with members of Best Buddies, an organization that creates lasting friendships between special needs students and their “buddy,” for a final dance party. Ending that way, each year brings the show full circle as to why everyone is there.

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The Stand-Up for Autism slogan has always been “One Night. One Stage. One Cause.” Everyone realizes they are there for one purpose: to raise money and awareness for autism.

The Stand-up For Autism committee for the 2017-18 school year poses for a picture following their recent show.
The Stand-up For Autism committee for the 2017-18 school year poses for a picture following their recent show. (Courtesy Jake Burrows / Baltimore Sun)
Hickory Elementary School donated $500 to the program to send to Autism Speaks. Pictured, from left, are Ayden Gallagher, first grade, Michael Brogley and Sara Oldenburg, fifth grade.
Hickory Elementary School donated $500 to the program to send to Autism Speaks. Pictured, from left, are Ayden Gallagher, first grade, Michael Brogley and Sara Oldenburg, fifth grade. (Courtesy Jake Burrows / Baltimore Sun)

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